Book Haul: November 2013

I got some absolutely gorgeous review books this month – every single one of which I am super duper excited about. Here’s what I’ve received/bought lately a-la Showcase Sunday/Stacking the Shelves/Mailbox Monday.

november13-tbr

For Review:

April TBR: New Authors (mostly!)

April 2013 TBRSo, my last monthly TBR pile turned into a two-month pile. That’s my life: lots of books, way too little time! Although I know I can’t read all of these books, I’m glad I have monthly pile. It gives me a bit more focus, rather than just staring at my TBR Mount Doom in terror.

I’ve got a few newbies on this month’s TBR pile: books I’ve received for review that I might not have found out about otherwise.

Also, I’ve got a few on the pile that I kinda “need” to read – namely, Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (ebook). I am desperate to listen to the BBC radio version of this classic UF novel, so I need to finish off the real thing first! To be honest, I’m finding it a bit hard going at the moment – great but a bit confusing. I also really really really want to get to Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor and The Killables series by Gemma Malley.

I’ve also got a few newbies off of Netgalley (Ink by Amanda Sun and The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau) though the likelihood of me getting to those this month is very, very, very low. But I will! Any day now…

February TBR 2013: Review-book-palooza!

February TBR - Dead Book Darling

This month’s bounty is being held by pirate!Winnie the Pooh!

Last year, I wrote a rather long post about how blogging can overwhelm me out sometimes. I get review books and, instead of being excited about them, I feel horrifically guilty because I know I probably won’t get to read most of them. So this month, I am going to only tackle that guilt head on and only read books I received for review!

Loads of these books have already come out (one on the pile came out in 2011), but they are all ones I’ve really, really wanted to read:

When between books, I continue to work on A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin – which I will finish one day, dammit!

10 Best Books of 2011

I’ll be honest, 2011 wasn’t the best year for me book-wise. For starters, I only managed to get through 63 books this year. While that looks like a lot, it means there a loads of books that I didn’t manage to get through – mostly ARCS, sorry publishers! Out of those 63 books, I only gave five a 5 star review. In other words, only 8% of the books I read this year did I consider excellent. Now compare that to 2010, where I gave nine books 5 stars. Five vs. nine! Isn’t that just depressing?

That said, there have been some truly standout novels this year. Some of them had been on my TBR pile for years while some were from brand-new authors. Here’s how they break down genre-wise: 3 Dystopian YA, 2 Adult Fantasy, 2 YA Urban Fantasy, 1 Adult Urban Fantasy, 1 Literary Fiction, and 1 YA Science Fiction. They’re a diverse bunch of books, but they are all worth a read! (Click on the titles to read my reviews.)

Top Ten Books of 2011

Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs

1. A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin

A Game of Thrones should really count as 3 books, considering it is big enough to double as a weapon! If you’ve somehow missed all the buzz about the HBO series based on this book, you’ve obviously been hiding under a rock. It is fantastic. Read the book, watch the show, go to a convention!

2. Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs

Patricia Briggs writes amazing books and Cry Wolf was no exception. I absolutely loved how the novel jumped between different characters, and wow what a plot. A-MA-ZING.

 

3. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins 

Yep, The Hunger Games. It took me forever to get to this book but it was ludicrously amazing. I even got my mother to read it (she adored it, btw!). Catching Fire and Mokingjay were just good and OK, but they did not detract from the brilliance of this book.

4. Moloka’i by Alan Brennert

Moloka’i is unlike all the other books on this list – it’s historical literary fiction! But wow, is it ever extraordinary. Even if you don’t usually read this type of book, I would give it a shot.

 

5. Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund

Do not be fooled by the cover of Academy 7, this is YA science fiction at its very best. The only, only issue I had with this book? It was too bloody short! Moooore, Anne Osterlund. More!

6. Pure by Julianna Baggott

Pure is kinda a cheat for this list. The book doesn’t come out until 2012 but I couldn’t help but add it to my list. While it isn’t perfect, it was one of the most terrifying YA novels I have ever read.

 

7. Temeraire by Naomi Novik

Temeraire! What a fantastic book! Dragons and Napoleon and magical magical writing. Read it!

8. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor 

Daughter of Smoke and Bone was probably one of the most unique YA books I’ve ever read. I am so very, very glad that it has gotten the praise it deserves. Oh, and Laini? Awesome awesome pink-haired lady.

The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong UK cover enclave-ann-aguirre

9. The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong

I was afraid to read The Gathering, as I adored Kelley’s Darkest Powers trilogy and everyone knows that sequels never live up to the original! The only exceptions being The Godfather II and… The Gathering! This book was every bit amazing.

10. Enclave by Ann Aguirre

Ann Aguirre’s Enclave lived up to everything I expected from it. And I expected a hell of a lot. Her Sirantha Jax series is a fantastic read, so I hoped and prayed that her venture into YA would be just as great . It was – it really was!

Giveaway! SIGNED Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

One of my very favourite books this year is Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. You might have heard of it considering everyone and their mother (mine included) is raving about it. The LA Times adored it, the New York Times adored it – hell – visiting extraterrestrials have been raving about it. It is a must read.

I was lucky enough to meet Laini while she was visiting London, and guess what? I got her to sign a copy to give away to all you lovely people. Here are the details:

The Prize: A SIGNED copy of Daughter of Smoke and Bone (UK cover) by Laini Taylor

To enter (Terms and Conditions):

  • fill out the form below
  • entrants must be 13 years of age or older
  • contest open to Europe Only (Continental Europe, UK and Ireland)
  • the winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to reply else a new winner will be chosen
Contest ends Monday 14 November at midnight (GMT). 

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